140 class bullet choice for 260?

Discussion in 'Big Stuff -- 6.5mm, 7mm, 30 Cal' started by 6.5grendel, Jan 8, 2019.

  1. 6.5grendel

    6.5grendel

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    I have a new 26" Criterion 260 rem barrel with a .160 free bore that I am getting ready to start load development on. The bullets I was looking at are 139 scenar, 140 ELDM, 142 smk, berger 140 hybrid, and berger 140 lrbt. What would you suggest to start with and what has everyone had best luck with in the 140 class? Any other opinions are welcomed that are not listed.I haven't saw much talk on the 140 lrbt's and didn't know if the premium price on either of the Berger's was worth it over the Sierras. Thank you.
     
  2. MikeMcCasland

    MikeMcCasland Silver $$ Contributor

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    I've run all that you've listed with exception to the Berger 140 LRBT. I'd guess you'll have easier out of the gate success with the 139 Scenar or the 142 SMK. The bergers will shoot for sure, but typically require a little more tuning; the hybrids less so.

    I haven't had much success with the Hornady ELDM line; I much prefered their A-Maxes.

    Sounds like you've got a good chamber to run anything in the 140 class though.
     
  3. Laurie

    Laurie

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    The 140 Berger LRBT is a tangent ogive design and easy to tune, in design terms rather like a 264 equivalent to the 180gn 0.308" Berger LRBT 'Juggernaut'. With a shortish bearing surface it can usually be driven to good velocities without excessive pressures. I can't comment on the Hybrid or ELD, but both the 139 Scenar and 142 SMK are very easy to tune, pretty barrel tolerant, and usually give good results including 800-1,000 yards matches. Any of this trio should perform well even if their BCs are a little down on some of the latest offerings. They all take jump so starting load development 10 to 15 thou' 'out' usually works well.

    As always with the 260 much depends on whether COAL constraints for magazine feed are an issue. This trio need COALs in the mid to high 2.9s for optimal seating positions. With 160 FB I'm assuming you're using a long action or single feeding in a short?
     
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  4. ShootDots

    ShootDots Gold $$ Contributor

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    My personal favorite is the Berger 140 LRBT. It always seems to shoot better than other 140 class target bullets. You will also notice that their dimensions are very consistent! In all but 1 barrel, whether they are .260A.I., 6.5 x 47L, or 6.5 x 284 they wanted to be 7-8 thousandths in the lands. In the ONLY barrel where they wanted to be OFF the lands, that barrel liked them 18 thousandths off>>> but that was an anomaly in my opinion.
     
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  5. STOMP442

    STOMP442 Gold $$ Contributor

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    My favorites are the Berger 140VLD and the 142 Sierra. They actually have identical BCs and both shoot really well out of my rifles. I have pretty much quit the Hornady line since I was having so many jacket failures with them last year. Just can't trust them anymore.
     
  6. sbhooper

    sbhooper Silver $$ Contributor

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    I have one of those barrels. It shoots anything that I have tried. I have not shot any 140-grain bullets, but I have tried both the 130 ELDM and the 147 ELDM and they both shoot great at Savage magazine length. I have settled on the Hornady 129 Interlock for my hunting chores. It is nearly as accurate as the other bullets in my rifle and hammers deer at 2977 fps mv. Gotta love Criterion. I have four of them, now.
     
  7. dstoenner

    dstoenner Silver $$ Contributor

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    Both barrels for my 260 liked 140 hybrids the best. My load was 42.5 h4350 in lapua brass with br2 primers. I loaded mine at 20 thousands off the lands but it never seemed to mind anything. For me this was the best load over lapua 139’s or Sierra 142.

    David
     
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  8. 6.5grendel

    6.5grendel

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    Thank you everyone for the advice. I bought a small box of 142 smk's today. Since they were a little cheaper I figured I would try them first. I have H4350 and H4831sc to try with them. If I can't get anything decent out of those combinations then I'll probably move on to the Bergers or Lapuas.
     
  9. sdeal5

    sdeal5 Gold $$ Contributor

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    Don't forget the JLK 140's @ about .012 in
     
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  10. BP1

    BP1 Team Texas F-TR Silver $$ Contributor

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    The 140 hybrids are hard to beat.
     
  11. 6.5grendel

    6.5grendel

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    Just wanted to say thank you to everyone that has helped me with all the questions that I have had recently and share some results from today. I loaded up a variety of handloads last night to try in the new barrel. I had 12 Berger 140 hybrids that i pulled out of a box of factory Berger 260 ammo, and the 142 smk's that I just got. I loaded the Bergers at .025" from touching with a few charges of H4350. I loaded the 142 smk's .020" from touching with a few charges of H4831sc. I loaded 7 more 142 smk's that I was just planning on using as a little more barrel break before I shot the other groups. Those 7 were loaded with with IMR4831 that I was just using to get rid of it because it was a full container and I don't use it with anything. I didn't expect much out of the IMR4831 because everyone suggests H4350 and H4831sc. The IMR surprised me and was the best of all the groups. It was the first group I shot. The break in shots on the second target were done on a previous day when first breaking in the barrel. 20190111_172714.jpg 20190111_172853.jpg 20190111_172925.jpg
     
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  12. seymour fish

    seymour fish

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    This
     
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  13. MikeMcCasland

    MikeMcCasland Silver $$ Contributor

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    Looks as though it really likes those 142 SMKs. Very good bullet, and certainly less expensive than a steady diet of Bergers. If you can get it to shoot consistently with IMR4831, it looks like you're set.

    You shooting this in F-Class, PRS, or just informally?
     
  14. 6.5grendel

    6.5grendel

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    I have only shot informally. I recently talked with another member on here that is local to me and is a member at the same gun club. He shoots F-Class and invited me come out to one of the matches. I'm interested in trying it and hopefully get to meet up with him sometime soon. Just have to get comfortable with a load for this gun first. I've always shot powders that are very temperature stable which is why I haven't used the IMR4831 until now because I've heard that it is not. It was 32F when I shot that group so I'm kinda worried what it will do when it warms up this spring. Hopefully it will still group well.
     
  15. dc.fireman

    dc.fireman Sling & Irons! Silver $$ Contributor

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    I have used:

    Hornady 123 ELD-M
    Hornady 123 SST
    Hornady 140 ELD-M
    Nosler 140 RDF
    Sierra 107 HPBT
    Sierra 140 HPBT
    Sierra 142 HPBT
    Lapua 123 Scenar

    Best luck so far was with the Hornady 123 ELD-M, and the Sierra 142 HPBT, both loaded to published starting charges (42.0 gr.,H-4831SC for the 123 ELD-M) and COAL's (2.800" for the 123 ELD-M). Crazy, I know - but I guess Lyman got it right with this caliber. My Hornady group was a 5 shot group measuring around .325", fired at 100 yds. from a bench. The barrel is a 26 inch, 1-8" Shilen Select Match from Northland, mated to a Savage 12 BVSS. Once I fired those groups, I didn't see a need to play around any further with it - I only need it to group @ 300M's, not get out to 1K or beyond.

    I've heard some complaints regarding the consistency of the ELD-M's, but I haven't experienced it yet, thankfully. My chrono clocks these right @ 2610 fps, so I'm not pushing them very hard.

    Good luck.

    *ETA*: H-4831 SC is one of Hodgdon's 'Extreme' Rifle Powders - it is not supposed to be temperature sensitive.
     
    Last edited: Jan 15, 2019

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